The faster you get rid of these, the faster you’ll thrive
Tired of your current situation?
Do you want to make 2019 better than 2018 and the years prior?
A lot of times we think that to solve a problem, we need to add something.The truth is, there are a lot of times when removing something is a more efficient solution.
“Design is perfect when there’s nothing left to remove.” — Antoine de Saint-Exupery
The problem with adding is that most of us get to a point where we’ve added so much that it’s overwhelming. While in the short run, it may have helped solve a problem, in the long run, it’s a crutch we can’t seem to get rid of.
In the past few months, I’ve mastered the art of saying “no”. Here’s a list of 66 things to say “no” to help you thrive:
2018 is by far the year I’ve thrived the most in my life. I went from being a pure logical introvert to being an ambiverted logicreative person (I made that up but that’s how I was reading my results from the 16 Personalities Test). I diversified my skillset and got paid for writing, taking photos, building video games, and more.
But outside of money, I fought my fears of height and drowning, I learned 36 valuable life and work skills, lived in 4 countries in different parts of the world (I’m currently in Colombia), met people I now call life-long friends, built an online presence I never thought would be possible, I’m in the best physical shape I’ve ever been, and more.
Thriving is not just about money but also about love, health, and happiness.
This article will show you the three most important things to get rid of to improve all these four pillars of a good life. It will show you exactly how you can make that happen based both on research and personal experiences. If you’re interested to go more in-depth on any of the topics covered here, don’t hesitate to ask. I left out some details to keep this article to a respectable length.
The results I’ve had in 2018 are not unique to me. YOU can also achieve them as others have in the past. Read this story about how Prithviraj combatted his greatest fear, skilled up, provided financial freedom for his family and inspired many to improve their lives.
If you manage to keep these three things out of your life, you will undeniably be equipped to thrive not only in 2019 but for the rest of your life as well.
But why now? There’s still time before 2019 ends after all.
I’d argue there’s not enough time until 2019, but if you start now, that’s doable. These things are not easy to get rid of, otherwise, they would be out of everyone’s life.
I’m warning you right here, this won’t be easy. As I like to say:
Nothing easy comes to you for free.
Finding the top three things was hard. Of the 20+ things I had in my list, I narrowed it down to the three most important in my opinion. Feel free to add your own or debate my choices in the comments section.
I ordered them from least to most important in my mind:
Definition: A feeling of sadness, repentance, or disappointment over an occurrence or something that one has done or failed to do.
If you do a quick scan of your life from as far as you can remember and take note of your regrets, how big is your list?
Most of us have done things we’re not proud of and regret having done. And here’s a truth we all know but forget all the time:
Humans are flawed
Run this through your head a few times.
Do you see that others also have made mistakes? You are not the exception, you are like everyone else.
Think of all the people you admire.
How many mistakes do you think they made?
Time, as we currently know it, only moves forward, ultimately leading to our demise. Life is too f*ing short to live in regret for things we’ve done in the past! The only thing we’ve got going is how we move forward from a mistake.
And that should be encouraging to you. You can’t undo the past but you can create a brighter future. You can pick yourself up after a fall, just like you did when you were learning to ride a bicycle. The person you are today doesn’t have to be the person you are tomorrow.
“Every next level of your life will demand a different you.” — Leonardo DiCaprio
How do I get rid of it?
*Disclaimer: I am not a psychologist. The following ways to get rid of regret are based on my own personal experiences, research, and observations. Try these and if they don’t work, don’t hesitate to consult the resources section below or ask me for more info.
Journal. As with most self-destructive thoughts and actions, your journey to healing starts with a good amount of self-awareness. Start the practice of writing down your thoughts, either when they happen or during a journaling session, or both. Make it a habit. Don’t overthink it, just write it down. Being aware of your thoughts is a freeing exercise and a good step towards acceptance.
Practice gratitude. During your journaling session, or shortly after waking up, think about who and what you are grateful for, and why. Gratitude brings you to a state of positivity, which is key to getting rid of bad thoughts like regret. It channels your energies in the right place. Be grateful to your parents, your friends, your teachers/mentors, people you look up to, etc. Write it down, say it out loud, tell it to them, it doesn’t matter. Just be grateful.
Realize you’re not alone. When you realize your “heroes” are struggling with the same shit you are, you are more apt to take it easy on yourself. Read biographies, study history, do research on them. But other than them, ask your parents and friends. What are some of the biggest mistakes they made? How did they overcome them? How did they feel? You’ll soon realize that not only you’re not alone, you’re like everyone else.
Realize when you feel regret and stop yourself. Self-sabotage is more frequent than we dare admit ourselves. Don’t let yourself talk shit about yourself. You f*’ed up, sure, but what good can it do to pile on? People are already telling you that you f*’ed up, instead of joining their game and hurting yourself, move forward from that. How can you do better moving forward? Drop negative words. Rephrase negative sentences, out loud or in your mind.
Surround yourself with positive people. This is potentially the most important part. Jim Rohn said: “You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.”. This couldn’t be truer. If you surround yourself with people who keep bringing you down, you’ll bring yourself down. On the other hand, positive people will help you move past your regret.
Forgive others. Have you noticed how much easier it is to forgive others than your own self? Right, so do it. The more practice you have at forgiving, the easier it gets to do it for yourself. Forgiveness, it turns out, is a most valuable and under-practiced skill. Learn to do it now.
Realize that some things are out of your control. This stoic philosophy is most simple, yet hard to grasp. Did you do everything you could to prevent it? Yes? Then it’s not your responsibility and you shouldn’t feel bad about it. A lot of times we beat ourselves over something we could have done better but most of the time, given the circumstances we were in, there really was nothing better we could have done.
“Mistakes are always forgivable if one has the courage to admit them.” — Bruce Lee
Definition: An unhappy or angry feeling of wanting to have what someone else has.
Who do you compare yourself with? Who has what you want?
Most of us have people we envy. People we think about who seem to have it all with close to no effort. Well, I’ve got some harsh truth for you:
Most of us deserve what we get
This works both on the positive side and the negative side. It’s rarely by accident that someone becomes “successful”. On the flip side, it’s frequently not by accident that we have “misfortunes”.
Misfortunes are merely a projection of our own beliefs. Research has shown that if you think you have bad luck, your mind won’t be receptive to good outcomes.
This leads us to this most important fact:
You are the master of your own destiny.
Whatever your beliefs, always choose to believe in yourself. If there’s one thing you have control over, it’s your own actions and decisions, not that of others.
Choose self-improvement over envy. Become truly self-aware. Compete not with others but with yourself. Don’t become better than your peer but better than yourself.
If I have thrived in 2018, it’s because month after month, I have competed with my own self. I’ve consistently reflected on my own actions and identified how to better myself.
But you won’t always be better. Have no regret. Remember, you can only move forward. Persevere.
Envy is a thief of time and destroyer of relationships, two of the most important “resources” in this world.
How do I get rid of it?
*Disclaimer: I am not a relationships expert. The following ways to get rid of envy are based on my own personal experiences, research, and observations. Try these and if they don’t work, don’t hesitate to consult the resources section below or ask me for more info.
Focus on your own goals. Do you write down your short-term, medium-term and long-term goals? Do you reflect on them on a regular basis? Are you aware of how you spend your time? A lot of times when we think someone is more impressive than us, chances are they are simply more focused on their own agenda over that of others. Compete with yourself, not with others.
Become more skilled. It’s a widely spread misconception that you can’t learn new skills rapidly. I’ve proven time and again that you can learn valuable skills in under 15 hours. The more skills you learn, the more confident you will be. The more confident you are, the less you’ll think others are better than you.
Practice gratitude. Just as with regret, gratitude is a great way to get rid of envy. Be grateful to people you are envious of. If you are envious of them, chances are they have something you don’t have yet. Thank them, see them as a model, be thankful for what they are teaching you. Make them your mentors.
Do good. If you think about people you’re envious of, chances are they are doing good in the world. Be like them and start doing things not only for yourself but for others. Volunteer in your local community and abroad. Give a hand to a family member or a friend. Use your hard skills to help people you care about. Do your chores to make someone you like/love happy.
Exercise. Envy is part anxiety, and a good way to get rid of anxiety is to feel good in your body. Exercising, if only a little every day, will not only make you feel better but raise your energy levels and confidence.
Eat healthily. Along the same theme as exercising, eating healthier makes you feel good in your body, leading to higher confidence. You will start to appreciate yourself more and suddenly not see others as superior to you.
“Envy is a declaration of inferiority.” — Napoleon Bonaparte
#1: Limiting Beliefs
Limiting beliefs constrain us in some way. Just by believing them, we do not think, do or say the things that they inhibit.
I kept the one thing I think is most important for last. A lot of people don’t realize the power of our own minds. I certainly didn’t.
For the longest time, I thought that because I was a logical person, there was no way I could ever be creative. I thought that because I was introverted, there was no way I could speak in public or surround myself with people. I thought that because I grew up in a poor family, there’s no way I could become “successful”.
These are all bullshit excuses and deep down, you know it. Here’s one of my favourite quotes of all time:
“Whether you think you can or you can’t, you’re right.” — Henry Ford
Henry Ford grew up in a poor family and wasn’t known to be a particularly smart person, yet he revolutionized the automobile industry and then some.
Was he lucky?
Maybe to some extent. I’m not familiar enough with his whole story but one thing is certain, he didn’t have limiting beliefs.
The same is true of people who believed in space exploration, and many other disciplines where it seemed impossible to succeed. We can now chat face-to-face in a matter of milliseconds with someone across the globe! Tell that to someone even just 30 years ago and they’d laugh in your face.
But it’s not all about technology, my main point here is that limiting beliefs are what’s holding you the most in order to thrive.
Over the last 13 months, I shattered most of my limiting beliefs, some of which I mentioned above.
How do you detect a limiting belief?
Simple. Whenever you find yourself starting a sentence with one of the following, chances are you’re about to mention a limiting belief:
I must, or mustn’t…
I do, or don’t…
I am, or am not…
Others are, or will…
This is how it works…
Take note of those. Throughout the day, when you listen to others, or even to yourself, notice how frequently people use these words.
It’s shocking, really.
Limiting beliefs are holding you back in more ways than you can imagine. Our mindset — the way we approach anything in life— truly dictates how we act. Think about Henry Ford’s quote from above.
While maybe you can’t drive a car yet, there’s nothing preventing you from learning it. What’s between you and these negations is time. With consistent practice, you can accomplish a lot more than you think.
When you have limiting beliefs, you prevent yourself from being who you truly can be.
How do I get rid of it?
*Disclaimer: I am not a psychologist. The following ways to get rid of limiting beliefs are based on my own personal experiences, research, and observations. Try these and if they don’t work, don’t hesitate to consult the resources section below or ask me for more info.
Be aware of what you say. As hinted above, negative sentences only reinforce your limiting beliefs. Make a conscious effort to realize when you say them. Stop yourself. Reward yourself on days when you haven’t heard yourself mention it, or give to a good cause when you find yourself using them.
Be aware of what you do. Our actions dictate how we think and vice versa. Do you act in fear? Do you act in confidence? Do you do things that are good for you or bad for you? Realize your actions. Note the bad things you do to yourself. You wouldn’t hurt someone you love, so don’t hurt yourself. Love yourself and act in confidence.
Be optimistic. While it’s good to realistic, a good dose of optimism never hurts. Dare believe that something good can happen to you. Dare believe in your dreams. Imagine the best case scenario and work towards it. With the right mindset, you really can accomplish *almost* anything! Pessimism, after all, doesn’t move you forward.
Break everything down to its smallest components. A lot of times our limiting beliefs happen because we’re thinking too big. It’s overwhelming. What people don’t realize that everything can be broken down into much smaller chunks. You think you can’t swim, or write, or snowboard, or dance, or be part of a professional sports team? Well, you’re right. If you think that any of these is one block, you’re never going to succeed. Every skill is a subset of another smaller skill. Break everything down to manageable chunks, and with consistency and repetition, there’s nothing you can’t do or be.
Don’t give up / Be consistent. You know what sets apart someone who wins and someone who doesn’t? It’s not talent or hard work. It’s persistence. You will suck the first time you do something. It’s true of everyone. Don’t give up. Measure progress, it will motivate you. Every little gain pushes you forward, building momentum. This brings us to:
Get to action. Inaction reinforces limited beliefs. If you don’t do, you don’t know or get. You might have had a bad experience that made it so you don’t want to act anymore. Reflect on a different approach. Try it. Don’t overthink it. Eddy Rickenbacker said: “Think things through, then follow through.” Breath that advice.
Become more skilled. Just like envy, the more skilled you become, the more confidence you build. The more confidence you build the less limiting beliefs you’ll have. You’ll be open to new perspectives and grow as a person. While that may sound daunting at first, it’s like anything, you can learn to be better at it.
“Argue for your limitations, and sure enough they’re yours.” — Richard Bach
Mind Hacking (free trial) (This guy is one of three people in this world who truly changed my life forever)
Choosing 3 things was insanely difficult. There are so many important factors to thriving that 3 just can’t cover everything. As such, and briefly, here are two I strongly considered putting on the list:
Ready to start your journey to make 2019 your best year yet?
I hope you learned something important here and that it’s going to push you to action. Too many people read articles and books, never acting on them. Don’t let this article just be another one of those.
If you get rid of regret, envy, and your limiting beliefs, you’re equipped to thrive not only for 2019 but for the rest of your life. So start now before it’s too late!
You can do this!